“Do people still go to the cinema?” I thought, as I was so surprised to see the cineplex so crowded. I have to say that since the advent of pay-Tv, Netflix etc. for me cinemas smell of Middle Age. My sitting-room, in fact, has been transformed into a cozy movie theatre: a wide big screen, a comfortable, reclining sofa and for what concerns snacks, well, my husband is usually in charge of food, he is such a great cook; that is why I got out of the habit of going out to see a movie and I thought that most people did likewise. I was wrong. Actually, I’m wondering if this is nothing but the first symptom of the approaching old age! By the way, let’s not think about it, for “Bohemian Rhapsody” I made an exception and I am glad I did it.
I don’t know about you, but for me “Bohemian Rhapsody” is one of the 3 pop rock music gems along with Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven” and Pink Floyd’s “Wish you Were Here”; it evokes the sounds and the colour of my youth. If one decides to watch the film having in mind to live those emotions again, well, he won’t be disappointed as from the very first shots, you are catapulted into the atmosphere of the time, which for us who did live it, let me say , “is a kind of magic“.The movie focuses on the first fifteen years of the rock group the Queen and their frontman Freddy Mercury, from the birth of the band in 1970 to the Live Aid concert of 1985.The reconstruction of places, people, clothes is absolutely amazing, while the narration is not always faithful to facts as it is clear the intent to consecrate on the screen a legend. Rami Malek is a convincing Freddie Mercury, even if sometimes he is a little over the top and seems having trouble in controlling the Mick Jagger hidden inside him, yet, despite my words, his interpretation has been worthy of an award nomination, so: chapeau !
The narration of the beginnings, the worldwide success, Freddie’s vicissitudes and illness are engaging, but the climax of the movie is at the end, with the Queen’s epic performance at the Live Aid. The power of music along with the memories that bring about make the final 15 minutes absolutely amazing and you find yourself there, back to 1985. I started to notice that the people around me couldn’t refrain from singing the songs, following the beat and even dancing. The atmosphere had become joyous and with the help of the darkness of the theatre, it was easy to imagine ourselves for a while the boys and the girls we used to be. When the lights were on, I could see mostly men and women in their fifties or sixties with the sparkling eyes of youth again. A spontaneous, long clap sealed the end of the movie.
It was a clap to the band, to Freddie but also to an age when we were still able to dream a better world. Thanks to the great intuition of Bob Geldof, the billion people, who watched the concert all over the world and united by the enchant of music, truly believed that all together could fight starvation in Africa. In was an age when walls were crashed rather than erected. In little more than thirty years “things have changed, changed utterly”, how was that possible? I thought. We have been defeated, that is the truth. Yet, while I was absorbed in these thoughts, I could hear a little voice inside me, a young voice which had been dormant for too long, which told me not to give in and kept on singing that eventually “we will, we will rock you!”💪